Verastem Inc. believes it is on track to reach the market in 2017 after starting a pivotal study of its lead FAK inhibitor to treat mesothelioma. If the plan succeeds, that will be three years sooner than if the biotech had stuck with its pre-IPO stable of preclinical compounds.

Verastem was founded in 2010 to use its high throughput screening technology to discover small molecules with epithelial cancer stem cell-specific toxicity.